More Complicated Modern Families Come With Financial Complications Too

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- The so-called nuclear family is in decline, and some of the financial blessings of their era may be going by the wayside too.

The nuclear family model was classically an opposite-sex married couple with children. In 1970, that was 40.3% of all U.S. households. Today that figure has declined to 19.6%, according to data from Allianz and its LoveFamilyMoney Study released this week.

In its place are more of what sociologists call the "modern" family, which Allianz breaks down as follows:

Multi-generational families:Three or more generations living in the same household.

Single-parent families: One unmarried adult with at least one child under 18 years of age.

Same-sex couple families: Married or unmarried couples of the same gender.

Blended families: Parents who are married or living together with a stepchild and/or child from a previous relationship.

Older parent with young children families: Parents age 40-plus with at least one child under 5 in the household.

Boomerang families: Parents with an adult child (age 21 to 35) who left but later returned to rejoin the family.

While the household unit evolves, Allianz points to a potentially big trouble spot: They're experiencing problems managing their money compared with traditional family households, with 57% of U.S. modern families "struggling to make ends meet," "struggling financially" or considering themselves "poor." That 57% figure is 10 points higher than that cited for traditional families. (Of course, financial difficulties are undoubtedly the reason many of these modern families exist.)

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